If you are concerned about the way a charity is being run, we want to hear from you.
Our Inquiry Policy sets out what you, the charity, and the public can expect from us. The Policy is designed to be helpful and easy to read, and we recommend that you have a look at this together with the rest of the information on this page before contacting us.
Before you contact us, it is important that you read the following information first, as there are some instances where your concern should be sent instead to the charity or another body to be dealt with. The following are examples of the types of concerns that we do want to know about.
Regulatory issues that we want to know about include:
The list above is not absolute, so if you have other issues that concern you, please contact us.
The three examples below should, in the first instance, be reported to Police Scotland and then to us:
We have found that the majority of concerns we receive can be dealt with by the charity itself. The charity trustees are the people responsible for running the charity and it is only fair that they have the opportunity to deal with your concern in the first instance. This gives the charity trustees the opportunity to explain any misunderstandings, or to put things right if something has gone wrong.
The types of concerns that you should take up with the trustees include:
Our Guidance and good practice for Charity Trustees provides more information about charity trustee duties.
Charity trustees are free to make decisions for their charity as long as these are within the powers of the law and the terms of their governing document. As a result, we do not have the power to overrule a valid decision taken by the trustees. If you do not agree with their decision, you should first speak to the trustees about it.
Additionally, we cannot usually become involved in the following issues, as it is not within our regulatory powers to do so:
If you decide that it is still appropriate to report your concerns to us, please complete the concern form. You can download and complete our updated Concern Form and post it to us, or complete our online form here. Please make sure that you provide all the information requested, as this helps us to consider your concerns as fully as possible.
At all times, we will act in the public interest, not on behalf of individuals or groups. We will not usually communicate with you while an inquiry is ongoing, unless further information is required – but we will advise you of the final outcome.
You can read our recent inquiry reports here.
A video that summarises the information on this page can be viewed below: